Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography/Kenna, John Edward
KENNA, John Edward, senator, b. in Valcoulon, W. Va., 10 April, 1848. After working on a farm he entered the Confederate army as a private, served chiefly in Missouri, was wounded in 1864, and was surrendered at Shreveport, La., in 1865. He afterward attended St. Vincent's college at Wheeling, studied law at Charleston, W. Va., and was admitted to the bar, 20 June, 1870. He was prosecuting attorney for Kanawha county in 1872-'7, and in 1875 was elected by the bar, under statutory provision, to hold the circuit courts of Lincoln and Wayne counties. He was chosen to congress as a Democrat, serving from October, 1877, until March, 1883, and had been re-elected when he was elected U. S. senator to succeed Henry G. Davis, and took his seat in December.